Indian Climber Rescued from Everest Dies, Bringing Season’s Death Toll to Eight

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GG News Bureau
Kathmandu, 28th May:
 An Indian climber who was rescued from Mount Everest last week has died in hospital, a Nepali tourism official announced on Tuesday, raising the death toll for this climbing season to eight.

Banshi Lal, 46, was evacuated from the mountain and brought to a hospital in Kathmandu. “He died at the hospital yesterday,” said Rakesh Gurung from the tourism department.

Among the fatalities this season are three individuals—one British climber and two Nepali guides—who are listed as missing but presumed dead.

This latest death comes as the Everest climbing season nears its end, with the number of fatalities relatively low compared to previous years. Last year was the deadliest season on record with 18 climbers losing their lives on Everest.

Additionally, three climbers died on other Nepali peaks. A Romanian climber aiming for Lhotse, Everest’s neighbor, and a French and a Nepali climber on Makalu, the world’s fifth-highest mountain, also perished.

Nepal, home to eight of the world’s ten highest peaks, welcomes hundreds of adventurers each spring when the weather is relatively mild, and winds are generally calm.

All of the deaths on Everest this season occurred above 8,000 meters (26,200 feet), in the “death zone,” where the thin air and low oxygen levels significantly increase the risk of altitude sickness.

Despite the tragedies, the season has seen remarkable achievements. Nepali climber Phunjo Lamam set a new record for the fastest ascent of Everest by a woman, reaching the summit in 14 hours and 31 minutes. Typically, climbers take several days to reach the top of the 8,849-meter mountain, pausing at various camps to rest and acclimatize.

Kami Rita Sherpa, a 54-year-old Nepali climber known as “Everest Man,” also made headlines by reaching the summit for a record 30th time, three decades after his first successful ascent.

This year, Nepal issued more than 900 permits for its mountains, including 419 for Everest, generating over $5 million in royalties. Over 600 climbers and their guides have already reached Everest’s summit this season, following a rope-fixing team’s successful climb last month. China has also reopened the Tibetan route to foreigners for the first time since its closure in 2020 due to the pandemic.

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